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Feb 10, 2016

Tribe Report:
Jumping in with Both Feet

Dear Ed,

Prior to our Tribe meeting I feel edgy, nervous, and unable to focus. It's the same feeling that comes up before every Tribe meeting: the "I don't want to do this" feeling. I accept the feeling, and do it anyway.

Our first hotseat displays laughter, and shares a fear of not being able to access his feelings. With encouragement from the tribe he gets into strong forms which transition from laughing to crying. We encourage him to stay with his forms until he reaches a point which might be a climax. He recalls being age 3 and unable to communicate with his father in the hospital. We discover his mother acts as medicinal rock donor for shutting down. He expresses strong feelings about a recent hospital encounter when his mother tells him not to cry. We agree to role play both events, using the more recent event as a rock donation re-enactment and opportunity to use new resources, then re-enacting the original scene at age 3 with new resources.

Hotseat reports feeling astonishment at the accuracy of the role playing, stating he wasn't in the Tribe meeting, he was back in the hospital.

This process moves me deeply as I have shutting down issues with my parents, which I take full responsibility for. I know I can't change my parents. I know they respond according to the intentions I radiate. If I want change, the change must come from me.

Our second hotseat reports he feels calm and ignores warning signs while trading. This develops into feeling like a fraud, and not wanting to feel like he has to keep up appearances. We trace this back to an event at age 3 when he's hit for spilling a drink. Hotseat is very willing to get into feelings, though does not want to role play the event. I feel a tear in my eye which reminds me of the care, willingness to feel and share feelings, and personal responsibility it takes to raise children. Anything less may pass on behavior patterns that can hold them back for the rest of their lives.

We complete a goal exercise with our newest member. Prior to the tribe meeting, he expresses doubt about being able to acquire a drum on short notice. We use the goal-setting template of: (A) What is my condition now, and (B) What specific condition do I desire, noting any feelings that come up on the path between A & B. He shows up with his new drum.

Our third hotseat shares self-confidence issues. He says everyone seems to believe in him, but he doesn't believe in himself. After a few minutes of getting into forms, he recalls being in a doctor's office at a very young age. He can remember the exam room in fine detail, down to the color of the paint on the walls and an amber jar of iodine on the shelf, but can't remember anything else - who's there, what he's feeling, or what's happening. Tribe encourages hotseat to go further and this elicits memories of his mother bursting in his room in the middle of the night, turning the bright light above his bed, and screaming at him. We do not start a rocks process as we approach the already extended ending time. He realizes if he wants confidence and success, he must be willing to enjoy the feelings of a spotlight shining on him.

I wish to thank the Tribe members for being willing, active and helpful participants in all processes. I feel happy that our new members are willing to jump into TTP with both feet.

Thank you for sharing your process and for documenting your meeting.
Feb 10, 2016


Ed, (bcc support team and my local tribe)

Thank you for your support with my workshop follow up. My thanks to those who provide such useful comments and feedback.

I commit to

"Work hard on my trading systems for three hours a day: See what feelings come up. Report ... to my support team and FAQ."

This starts from Ed's comment at the workshop - approximately "Are you actually serious about trading?"

* I average just over 3 hours a day in the past three months and now average slightly under 3 hours a day (2.98 hours) since the workshop. I previously put in place a system for trading ETFs on stock indexes, which works well.

* I perform a roll-forward test, which generates bad results: -10% per year compound with standard deviation of about 30%. I feel glad that I do this roll-forward test rather than find this out with real money. This prompts a rethink of my approach. My approach to dealing with over-fitting needs to change because the over-fitting persists in spite of my efforts, which causes the poor performance. I adopt an ensemble approach as an alternative for avoiding over-fitting and this works.

* I then complete a successful roll-forward test, on two slightly different systems, to 9/2011 with very satisfactory, but not world beating, return and volatility / risk from both systems. I then buy the data from 9/2011-1/2016 for a true out of sample test. I do not have this data on my computer during the other testing so I hope I do not snoop into it in any substantial way. The out of sample tests run as I write this.

I feel a bit anxious about the results of this test after all the work I do.

* Still to do: Complete out of sample test in the next few days. Buy and set up data feeds and daily runs. Paper trade for a few months. Add funding to the account and trade live.

* My short term health is very good. Longer term I have a slow-growing cancer which does not seriously threaten my health or life in the short term, but without treatment there is a 20% chance it kills me within 15 years. Treatment options do not appeal at all but at the moment the doctor recommends "active surveillance" only and no treatment. I spend a lot of time researching the issue and agree with his assessment.

I cut my weight down to 71kg from 75kg with a target of 67kg. I achieve this weight loss using Robert Kegan's book "Right Weight, Right Mind". I also find his ideas about personal change extremely helpful e.g., in "In Over Our Heads: The Mental Demands of Modern Life".

My doctor tells me getting my weight down will help with the prognosis of the cancer.

* My other projects progress well. I finish second year physics at last, which I am studying on my own. I feel great joy on reaching this milestone. I find thermodynamics a challenge. I then commence learning the math for 3rd year physics. I am enjoying this and I don't find it too hard. I have people who regularly keep me accountable - weekly monthly or longer depending on the context.

Overall I feel very happy and productive.

I next report on 10th May 2016 - in three months. I plan to continue my reports at this frequency until I have either started trading futures or I give up.

Thank you for sharing your process.
Feb 9, 2016

Rocks Process: Dread in the Workplace


I had an important experience on our newly reformulated tribe on Thursday of last week. I waited a few days to send this report in to try to process all of my feelings. I still have some processing to do. I realize that I do not express feelings readily so I am working on this.

We met on time with our four person Tribe. Did the drumming and the check in once then we went around the room to express feelings and issues. It appeared that myself and TM3 were expressing some immediate issues. I know that I am very hot with my work issue. I went first. Since I am new to the process, I am feeling a lot of things. Trepidation and doubt about the process. These are people I am just getting to know. What if I make a fool of myself, what if I don’t? At the same time I am feeling severe pain and discomfort and dread about my work.

I am in a situation where the people I work with are attacking me mostly without merit, sometimes with merit. But I know that nothing I have done warrants this kind of treatment. It is a living nightmare. A constant yet inconsistent barrage of assaults. I feel like I am trapped, I can’t leave the company. I have a successful career built over decades. I have a family that is dependent on me. I have always taken care of my obligations and have given my family a good life. I can’t stay, but the situation is driving me insane with dread, fear, misery. I can’t move within the company at least not now. No options are available to me. And I believe that I have a blind spot for these type of situations somehow.

We start the process I feel flushed, and it’s like my head is in a cloud or a bubble. My face is warm, I can hear the other members giving me the acknowledgement. It is like they are far away in the distance, but I can also feel their close presence. I get more and more into the feeling, I am surrounded by this cloud. Clenching my jaw more and more. My body is crinkling up, into a small figure, arms are contorted, head is down and eyes closed. The cloud is getting thicker. I feel my arms drawn in so tight that they are aching now. I am in some kind of altered state, but I can hear everything that is going on. PM tells me to freeze and then asks quietly where I am. I am still crinkled up, I say nothing. They prompt me again, I see my living room of my parents’ house when I was 12. The Tribe prompts me some more. I am sitting on the couch and talking with my dad. I know what is about to happen. I remember this day well. He wants to have a heart to heart conversation with me.

This is something new he usually just used intimidation or violence, not conversation and reason. So he calmly tells me I am ungrateful and how he has done so much for me. As if he is reasoning with me. Then he mentions how much money he has spent on me. By this time I had been working odd jobs for two years earning my own money. So I responded back to him that I will pay him back. This was not what he was looking for. But I did not know this at the time.  Then he got furious and jumped on me. Beat my ass pretty good. This was a massive betrayal for my father to act as if he wanted to have a conversation when what he really wanted is complete subservience. He tricked me, then he abused me and then acted as if I had done something wrong. If there were rules to this game, I sure did not know what they were.  This was my AHA moment, to realize that FRED was colluding with other FREDS to put me into these no win situations. It was a powerful experience. We role played this with TM3 acting as me first, and TM2 acting as my mother, and PM as my dad. Then with me and then again successfully handling the issue foregiving the shut down rock from my mother. And receiving the heart rock.  We did a couple of check outs along the way.

I was exhausted after this experience. We went through a rocks process with TM3 and his mother. It was centered around her verbally abusing him. Embarrassing him in front of other people.  A pattern that continues till this day. He just accepts it with guilt and no complaint. He received his medicinal response pattern for this abuse from his grandmother. This was something TM3 figured out in the process and was a big AHA for him. His mother is near death and is still abusing him. So we did the Rocks Process I played his mother. It was a good experience for me to be a receiver and to understand and watch someone else’s process.

After the meeting I feel different but difficult to describe at first. I feel tired, but more at peace. I am clutching my heart rock through the next day and the weekend. Now I just put it in my pocket every day. Two significant things happen immediately the next day. 1) A close friend and very competent executive within my company is moved into the upper leadership above these evil people that have been causing me problems. This is big, in corporate America “who you know” is your lifeblood. 2) When talking with my manager the next day he is treating me very different right off the bat without any prompting from me. He is acting more professional, more like a real manager, more sympathetic. But the biggest issue is that I do not have this sense of dread, or impending doom, in my mind worried about what was going to happen next. Before it was like someone punching me in the stomach but I did not know where the punch was coming from or when. Now it was gone. This alone is huge.

It is something that is potentially life changing. But I believe I have a ways to go. More issues to work through. More feelings to release.  More processes to work through. I have worked for many years and tried many things in my DIM path, sometimes talking with a therapist, but mostly on my own. Meditation, diet, exercise, self-observation, more reading than you can imagine. But this was significant. Chief I can’t thank you enough. Your selfless giving back to us is immeasurable.  And to my Tribe I could not do this without them.  Thanks for dragging me (literally) through this. Thanks for the AHA.
Thank you for sharing your process.

Congratulations to you and to your Tribe and to your Process Manager.
Feb 9, 2016

Adaptation and Endurance


Some photos - extending my work with adapting to cold.

Thank you for sending me your cool photos.
Feb 9, 2016

Counter-Trend Moves

Dear Sir,

In following the trend, do you feel the counter trend moves pull at your intentions also?

Happy moment
Thank you for raising this issue.

In Trend Trading, we do not measure or respond to counter-trend moves.

We stay with the trend until it changes, at which point we respond.

You might consider taking your feelings about <outguessing your system> to Tribe.
Feb 8, 2016

Trust, Infidelity and Fore-Giveness


I read an FAQ post about Forgiveness (Jan 30, 2016) and your response to this person.

I am trying to review my own path in the last 2.5 years to see where I could have done things differently because I do not want to make the same mistakes again.

I’m thinking about the 3. Judging / Take Responsibility part about viewing the other party as a mirror of our own intentions. I’m trying to understand what that means.

I think I made a mistake in 2. Drift (not ending it early on) and now I am presently in 3. Judging / Taking Responsibility.

In human interaction, there is a certain level of faith and trust we give to the person we interact with. Instead of engaging in ‘ritual of collecting evidence’, I thought it was enough that I came across evidence without looking for it, to ask the person outright if X was going on when things didn’t make sense (E.g in this case cheating) and that if he wanted to, to please let me know so I can exit the relationship to protect my health.

I do not understand why he could not have just exited the relationship by telling me he was with another woman all this time from the beginning, I am unsure why he would still encourage me to move overseas and tell me he loves me every day, and that he is extremely happy I am in his life.

When I asked him, he said he thought he was ‘cured’ from his sexual promiscuity when he met me, and thought things would be ok.

I am unsure in all those time where I should have taken my exit point when I didn’t have any clear proven evidence because I didn’t go looking for it, and he had a reason for everything that seemed valid, and that he was convincing that nothing was happening. To function in relationships we have to have a certain level of trust.

At the end of the 2.5 years I find myself going through a ‘cataloguing’ process of all our past memories with this person and realising that all the evidence was there, I just believed all his excuses for it. I don’t know why I did this. I took the scientific approach and if there was no conclusive proof, then I couldn’t deduce anything – and I ignored my instincts.

2 weeks ago I was emailed from someone trying to protect me telling me that he was in a relationship for a long time with many women and to look at his Skype. I approached him and he denied, swearing on this daughter’s head that he wasn’t a liar. I thought he would admit it at that point. I then engaged in the ‘collecting evidence’ and found all the lies over all these years from day 1.

After he was found out, he cried that he was ’54 and stuffed up again, and had nothing to live for’. That he was diagnosed as having the traits of a serial killer and a psychopath and he was doing the best he could.

The next day he made excuses for why he did what he did, and used another famous person as a role model – saying he did the same thing, and he is still very successful, and that most of this friends did the same thing.

So reading through the TTP view on how to approach relationship, I am still confused as to the point at which I left my boundaries in the dark. I understand 500% that the long distance relationship has helped cloud it all. If we had moved in years ago, I would have exited sooner.

I left and moved back to my country, telling him that I am sorry for all that has happened, and that I hope he is happy with the decisions that he has made.

I have a Tribe meeting in 2 weeks, and I want it to be productive and I do not want to be a victim.

I do not want to use it as a venting session. I think maybe my entry point is somewhere along the lines of I ignore my instincts or depend too much on the honesty of others and that they have my best intentions in mind as well.

I thought I knew my boundaries and I expressed them to him clearly when these things came up, but he re-assured me with a convincing logical reason.
Thank you for sharing your process.

You might consider taking your feelings about <trust> and <infidelity> to Tribe as entry points.

In the TTP rocks process, we do not forgive the perpetrator in the sense of offering absolution or suspending consequences.

We identify our own Rocks (response patterns) and then fore-give them back to their donors. This helps to free us from having to attract and participate in a recursion of the same drama - either with the same or with a different partner.
Feb 8, 2016


Hi Chief,

I notice when I tell other people my underlying true feelings, I tend to repeat talking about it and add more. I recall in Austin Tribe you teach me to tell my feeling in few simple words, then pause and looking at other people and keep quiet.

It reminds me of the pyramiding or adding more-on, well trained TTP practitioners know how much to risk and might not need to add mor-on. So far my simulation doesn’t show advantage on adding mor-on in terms of Bliss.

I might take my feelings of wanting to say more, wanting to add more as the entry into my Tribe meetings.

Thank you for sharing your process.
Feb 8, 2016 

Lunch in Slovenia

Dear Mr. Ed Seykota!

My name is [Name] and I am 23 year old. I am from Slovenia (EU).

I study law at University of Ljubljana (I only have to write a degree paper) but my true passion is trading. I have been trading for the last 4 years and I am really aspired about trend following and I love to create new trading systems.

I am writing you because I really admire you and your career. Your way of thinking is unique and I really enjoy reading your “interviews”.

My favourite quote of yours is: The markets are the same now as they were five to ten years ago because they keep changing – just like they did then.

I was wondering if you have a spare 15 minutes for a young trader who would love to hear your story and any advice you may have regarding trading and trend following and networking with other trend followers.

If you have some time I would love to talk with you. I would also love to invite you to a good lunch, so if you will by chance come to Slovenia, you know where you can get one.

Have a nice day!

Best regards,
Thank you for sending me your kind words and your invitations to:

1. Compress my story and advice about trading and networking into 15 minutes.

2. Have lunch with you in Slovenia.

As an interim solution, you might consider having lunch at 7:00 PM Slovenia time (12:00 Noon, here in Austin - about when I have lunch) and listening to the Whipsaw Song.

Feb 8, 2016


Hi Ed.

If you have you system, traded it for many years, happy with it etc...but you wonder if the paramaters you use to enter/exit are optimal? How can you test for this? Without tinkering with the system too much or breaking the rules how do you find if your system rules are optimal?

eg  I look for stocks that have doubled in the past 300 days...but could this be better? 

Thank you for raising this issue.

Theoretically, and in your imaginings, you can do something differently in the past and them get a different and more optimal result, now.

Practically, in the now, you can only do what you do, including, if you like, thinking about changing the way you operate

If you would like to find an "optimal" system, you might consider starting with a definition of what optimal means for you, now.

Feb 6, 2016


Hi Ed,

Once upon a time, one snowy winter evening while you stoked a roaring fire during an Incline Village Tribe meeting, I recall you advising I affirm 'winning'.  I went home, wrote 'WINNING' on a paper, pinned it on my office wall, and focused.   Within a week, the most extraordinary out-of-the-blue event happened:   a Steeler's halfback let me wear his four rings and take a picture.


Rocky Bleier won Super Bowl IX and X, fought in Vietnam, was wounded in both legs and told he would never play again.  He trained obsessively, and came back to win XIII and XIV, giving an extra special meaning to these ultimate American symbols of winning, these rings.

best regards,
Thank you for sharing your process.
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